Thursday, June 26, 2008

Conversation on a Hot Day

A few months ago we were in San Marcos, Guerrero, and starting chatting with this elder at his house about life, work and struggle.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Wanna Buy a Taxi?


While many U.S. malls display hot sport cars inside their stores with cute girls handing out information, our neighborhood grocery store Mega took a more practical approach.

Two ordinary looking men tried to lure customers to buy a new taxi painted in the new regulation colors--gold and red. Soon all Mexico City taxis are supposed to look like this.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Meet el Sr. Carbajal

BEJUCOS, Estado de Mexico--On most days you can catch el Sr. Carbajal riding on horseback through his steamy hometown. He said he's never owned a car and never will. A car doesn't go where el Sr. Carbajal needs to go--through the mountainous campos of the Tierra Caliente region. While most male residents of Bejucos migrate to the United States, el Sr. Carbajal says he's never had a desire to leave his land.



Wednesday, June 11, 2008


LUVIANOS, Estado de Mexico--We stumbled upon a hidden huarache factory here that distributes these traditional handcrafted leather shoes throughout the country. The woman who runs the makeshift factory expanded the business with remittances that her sons send her from Austin, Texas.

Monday, June 9, 2008

The $1,500 sombrero

LUVIANOS, Estado de Mexico--Jeremy tries on a sombrero in the Tierra Caliente region, where a lightweight, bendable hat is not only traditional but also necessary. Hat makers use palm leaves to weave an intricate and high quality sombrero that costs about $1,500 USD.

It takes months for one hat to be completed, and then lasts a lifetime. But for campesinos or farmers who work the land for a living, a hat like this is a life saver. Some campesinos save for years and years to afford this luxury.

While younger generations prefer a baseball cap, older farmers wear their sombreros with pride. Some young men, though, see how necessary a hat like this is to battle the region's intense heat and create new styles and ways of wearing the sombrero. They are reinventing a tradition in order to keep the sombrero alive.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Rice Krispies back in Mexico!

It's amazing what foods you begin to miss when you've been away for awhile. While I was living in Michigan, I craved breakfast tacos. While living in Florida, I missed Mexican Coca-Cola, and in Mexico City I longed to hear my bowl sing "Snap, Crackle, Pop!"

I'm not sure why. I was never a huge fan, but I guess you always want what you can't have. On trips back to the States, I always had to have at least one bowl. I even asked my sister, Marisol, once to stuff a bag of Rice Krispies in her suitcase when she came to visit me (which she graciously did) from San Antonio.

Then a few days ago, while online grocery shopping, the familiar blue box popped up on the computer screen. Was this an Internet hoax? Surely, there was some mistake. But I clicked on the "add to cart" button, and hoped for the best.

When the groceries were delivered, I frantically scanned through all the bags. And there they were---those three little guys just like I remembered.

Apparently, Mexicans enjoyed Rice Krispies too until about 20 years ago when they misteriously disappeared from grocery store shelves. For whatever reason, they are now back in Mexico, ready to win over a whole new generation.

So Snap, Crackle, Pop or Pim Pum Pam! (as they say here) to everyone!